Jones v. McMasters,
61 U.S. 8 (1857)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Jones v. McMasters, 61 U.S. 20 How. 8 8 (1857)

Jones v. McMasters

61 U.S. (20 How.) 8


Where a person was born at Goliad, then in the State of Coahuila and Texas, being a part of the Republic of Mexico, which place was also the domicil of her father and mother until their deaths, and was removed at the age of four years, before the declaration of Texan independence, to Matamoras, in Mexico, this person is an alien, and can sue in the courts of the United States.

Page 61 U. S. 9

Her allegiance remained unchanged unless by her election, which it was incumbent on the opposite party to show.

According to general principles, mere alienage did not forfeit a title to land in Texas, and although the Constitution of Texas provided that no alien should hold land in Texas except by title emanating directly from the government of that Republic, yet it was afterwards declared that the legislature should, by law, provide a method for determining what lands may have been forfeited or escheated.

In the absence of such a legislative provision, a title emanating from the government of Mexico, anterior to Texan independence, is not forfeited.

In a court of law, where a grant from the government is in regular form, it is not proper to inquire into the voidability of the grant from equitable considerations.

The case is stated in the opinion of the Court.

Page 61 U. S. 17

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